It’s Monday 17th November 2008 and the Emerald Season commences

It’s Monday 17th November 2008 and the Emerald Season commences

After having a teary week saying goodbye to all our seasonal staff, we are now looking forward to the next few months of ever changing greenery and rainstorms and river rising. The change has been gradual but the dramatic thunderstorms have started the mopane buds growing and young grass shoots sprouting up (they seem to grow several centimetres every day!). As our world becomes slowly greener and the babies appear we start thinking green … no, let me rephrase … Emerald Thoughts – here is a sneak peak of this year’s Emerald Season.

Two tiny impalasEmerald Season scene

Although the rains have started, the Luangwa is still low enough to drive across. The muddy puddles left over from any rainfall have become a favourite place for a diversity of species to wallow in. Road blocks come in the form of big muddy elephants that don’t seem to be too keen to move out of the way. Back at Nkwali we have blocked off half of the chalets for renovations, extending the thatch to create a lovely private outside area.

Taking the thatch off  chalets at NkwaliWallowing warthogs

Robin returns to Zambia tomorrow to help Emily with the final preparation for Liuwa Plain. How to get everything there? Emily is due for a shopping trip in Lusaka and to see the supply truck off to Mongu in western Zambia. A boat then has to collect everything and transport it to the camp (a couple of hours away!), so there isn’t any room for errors. Robin is very excited about the Liuwa Safaris and has been meticulously planning everything. Debs and Bertram (the lucky two) will also accompany Robin during the December safaris. All in all it is set up to be a fabulous experience (watch this space for updates).

Wildebeest on Liuwa  PlainsBoating up to Nsefu

Once the river has risen to its fabulous full level (we are so looking forward to sunset cruises) Nsefu Camp will open up for the first time in the Emerald Season for River Journeys. All of the guides are ‘discussing’ who is going to have the chance to lead these safaris – exploring the lagoons and flooded ebony groves and visiting the huge yellow-billed stork colony. At the moment it looks like Daudi, Keyala and Zebron will be sharing the privilege.

Wild dog pups playingPlaying with collars on Wild  Dog Week

Our most popular Special Interest Safaris are and David Rogers’ Photographic Workshops. The last two years I have been here both of these safaris have been a great success, with like minded people coming together and having a blast. They have proved so popular we are offering two chances for both in 2009. During David’s workshop everyone takes home lots of handy hints on how to take that super shot, whatever your specialty. While wild dogs are not guaranteed during Wild Dog Week, you do get an inside look at how scientific research is conducted and its implications. Of course the allure of a dog sighting (with the half grown pups) also encourages enthusiasm.

Getting the right perspective while photographing elliesLearning about macro

All of these Special Interest SafarisEmerald Season Safaris let you experience the bush in an alternative fashion – and as this coming year looks like it will be a little tight on everyone’s pockets, enjoying your African Safari during a different season not only gives you a different perspective but you can typically save about 40% off the total price. We love bargains! If you would like to find out why the Emerald Season is most of the staff’s favourite time of year, you can join us by contacting your favourite Africa Travel Specialist.


I am an egg - what bird hatched from me?Which species do I belong to?

PS: on another note Emily and Rob had an excursion into the park and found this adorable little chick – can anyone guess what species it belongs to? We’ll provide the answer next week!

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